Out in the Community
As part of its standard to forge and maintain long-term, positive and proactive relationships with members of the local community and greater water industry and to be transparent about its operations and programs, OCWD board members and staff speak regularly before groups and at events. We recently participated in the following:
- OCWD staff hosted a per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) congressional briefing that featured Congressman Harley Rouda. Representatives from the offices of U.S. Senators Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris, and U.S. Representatives Gil Cisneros, Jose Luis Correa and Alan Lowenthal were also in attendance.
- OCWD staff also provided a PFAS briefing to California State Senator Tom Umberg. Directors Sarmiento and Brandman, General Manager Mike Markus, Executive Director of Water Quality & Technical Resources Jason Dadakis, and Legislative Affairs Liaison Alicia Dunkin participated in the briefing.
- Director Cathy Green attended and spoke at the ACWA Region 10 event: “The Human Right to Water and Water Agency Collaborations to Achieve the Goal.”
- Mike Markus participated in the Riverside County Water Task Force and spoke about PFOA and PFOS, two of the PFAS chemical family that are constituents of emerging concern.
- Mike also presented “The Facts from Operating a Membrane Facility for Decades: OCWD, Water Factory 21 and Groundwater Replenishment System” at the WEFTEC 2019 conference and exhibition in Chicago. Additionally, Executive Director of Planning & Natural Resources Greg Woodside and Director of Recharge & Wetlands Operations John Bonsangue gave presentations at WEFTEC 2019 and accepted the Utility of the Future Today award on behalf of OCWD. Greg’s presentation, co-authored with James Fortuna of the county of Orange was titled “A Collaborative Integrated Water Resources Approach for Watershed and Water Supply Improvements in North Orange County, California.” John’s presentation was titled “Resilient Groundwater: Managing Aquifers for One Water.”
- The WateReuse Action Plan was presented and discussed by a panel that included OCWD’s Jason Dadakis at the 10th Anniversary meeting of the Orange County Chapter of WateReuse California. Jason is also the OC Chapter President.
- In addition, Jason gave an overview on PFAS in the OCWD service area and participated in a related panel discussion at Sustain Southern California’s Water Solutions 4 one-day conference held at UC Irvine. He was also on a panel regarding PFAS at Urban Water Institute’s annual conference in San Diego.
- OCWD staff disseminated information and GWRS bottled water at the Orange County Sanitation District’s Open House.
- Director of Water Quality Pat Versluis recently presented to the Metropolitan Water District Water Quality Managers Meeting at the MWD Laboratory in La Verne. Pat presented information on “OCWD’s Response to PFOA and PFOS.”
- Pat also presented about OCWD and its response to PFAS to the ACWA Region 10 meeting.
- Director of Special Projects Bill Hunt gave a GWRS presentation to the California Environmental Health Association, Citrus Chapter.